In English it's possible to say last last year to informally say "the year before the last". Is it similar in Japanese that I can say きょうきょう年 to mean the same?

  • 5
    Did you mean: 去年
    – naruto
    Commented Jun 9, 2016 at 23:07
  • Yeah, my dictionary says 享年 is a person's age when they die.
    – kuchitsu
    Commented Jun 9, 2016 at 23:13
  • I don't think that''s very common in English. I wouldn't know what you meant if you said it. I call two years ago "the year before last" or "two years ago". "Last last year" sounds kinda like something a young child would say.
    – Paul
    Commented Jun 10, 2016 at 20:42

2 Answers 2


Last year (きょねん) is typically written as 去年.

While the word 去去年 (きょきょねん) seems to exist in the dictionary, I've never heard this usage before.

The phrase 一昨年 (おととし) is used more commonly for "the year before last".

EDIT: A few searches come up mostly with Chinese results, confirming 去去年 isn't common in Japanese.

  • To be fair, searches for all-kanji phrases (at least for me) generally turn up results almost entirely in Chinese, even if it's perfectly valid Japanese - I'd throw in a kana in there if you can.
    – Sjiveru
    Commented Jun 10, 2016 at 0:57
  • 1
    Yes, I did throw in a は to avoid that exact situation (:
    – Locksleyu
    Commented Jun 10, 2016 at 2:08
  • I think using the dancing mark (踊り字) when applicable will tend to get you better search hits, eg 去々年? Googling in Japanese is a little finicky.. Commented Jun 10, 2016 at 6:54

Be aware! If you ask somebody "What did you do KYO-O-NEN - 享年? , he'll be startled out. Bcause you are asking him "What did you do in the year you were dead?

去年 (きょねん)means "last year," but 享年(きょうねん)means "the year somebody died," which is inscribed on the back of a tomb stone under the name of the dead.

There is no such a word as 去去年 in Japanese language. Perhaps you are refering to "一昨年" - the year before the last year -, or two years ago, which is pronounced as "Issakunen" or "Ototosi."

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